Something for the Weekend (12 - 14 June)


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Glasgow Film Festival Co-Director Allan Hunter is back with his weekly look at the best films to watch over the weekend and beyond.

Did you have great expectations for the lockdown? If you suddenly had more time on your hands did you plan to master Mandarin, bake like Candice Brown, quilt like Kirstie Allsopp and become a finely honed athlete? It doesn’t seem to have worked out like that for most of us. Does a few scones and some delicious Mary Berry brownies count? The one constant throughout the lockdown has been the movies. There has to be a film for every mood—a comedy that lifts your spirits, a nailbiting thriller that makes you lose all sense of time or a documentary that allows you to see the world through very different eyes. Movies are a constant source of comfort and joy and have kept many of us going through the strangest of times. That’s why it is a pleasure to offer a few more suggestions for the days ahead. Zhùyì ānquán!

Citizens Of The World (Curzon)

Available: Curzon Home Cinema from Friday 12 June

It is never too late to contemplate new horizons in Citizens Of The World. The latest feature from Gianni Di Gregorio (Mid-Summer Lunch, Salt of The Earth etc) is a typically low-key charmer that leaves a warm afterglow. Three elderly, cash-strapped Italian men are contemplating living their twilight years abroad. Could they learn a new language, embrace a different culture and make their meagre pensions stretch a little further? Do any of them even have a passport? Considering possibilities from Bulgaria to the Azores starts to focus their minds on whether the grass is really greener elsewhere. A gentle, sleepy delight with a generous heart in which Di Gregorio co-stars with Giorgio Colangeli and the late, great Ennio Fantastachini.

The Australian Dream (Dogwoof)

Available:  Curzon Home Cinema and other major digital platforms from today

The roar of the Black Lives Matter movement echoes around the world. The measured, thoughtful documentary The Australian Dream provides insight into how racial divisions continue to shape that country. Adam Goodes is considered one of the best players in the history of the Australian Football League. A star athlete, he was named Australian of The Year in 2014. The more he embraced his indigenous heritage, the more he was subjected to abuse on and off the pitch. This handsome documentary tells the story of an eloquent, admirably dignified individual, placing it in the wider context of a country still coming to terms with the legacy of colonialism and invasion. 

Second Run VOD Service

Distributor Second Run has brought an amazing selection of award-winning international films into circulation in the UK.  Now their catalogue of 160 titles is available at £4.99 per title in a new VOD (Video On Demand) service. Just to sweeten that good news, they are sharing the rental proceeds with independent cinemas across the land including the GFT. That means you can rent some great films and help a good cause. Films that jump out include Vera Chytilova’s Daisies (Sedmikrasky) (1966), Bill Morrison’s haunting documentary Dawson City: Frozen In Time (2016) and Jaromil Jires’ lyrical Valerie And Her Week Of Wonders (1970).

Roy’s World: Barry Gifford’s Chicago

Available: Cheltenham International Film Festival online June 12th only

Rob Christopher’s much-admired documentary was one of the hits of this year’s Glasgow Film Festival. It continues its journey into the world at the Cheltenham Film Festival where it streams for one night only on June 12th. Barry Gifford is best known as the author of the Sailor And Lula novels and for his collaborations with David Lynch, including Lost Highway. Christopher takes his inspiration from Gifford’s autobiographical collection The Roy Stories to evoke the author’s childhood in the Chicago of the 1950s. Archive footage and animation combine with readings from Willem Dafoe, Matt Dillon and Lili Taylor

Also showing

The world has grown smaller in the last few months which makes a vast, swaggering, western all the more appealing. BBC2 delivers the goods with William Wyler’s Oscar-winning classic The Big Country (1958) (Sunday, 1.40pm) which comes complete with Jerome Moross’s rousing score, marvellous cinematography and a memorable bout of fisticuffs between Gregory Peck and Charlton Heston. Looking slightly further ahead, The Party’s Just Beginning (2017) screens on Sky Premiere On Tuesday June 16th at 10pm. The first feature directed by the ridiculously talented Karen Gillan offers a fearless fusion of heartbreak and hilarity as a young woman copes with loss and grief. Lee Pace co-stars with the fantastic Rachel Jackson. It was a memorable world premiere at GFF in 2018 and we can’t wait to see what Karen directs next. One last recommendation to bring a smile to your face-Preston Sturges' breathless, helter skelter smalltown comedy The Miracle Of Morgan’s Creek (1944) (Film4, Tuesday June 16th, 12.40pm). 


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